Moe trainer Peter Gelagotis pleads not guilty to serious charges on the first day of a bicarb hearing

Group 1-winning trainer Peter Gelagotis has pleaded not guilty to two serious charges relating to the alleged stomach-tubing of a runner on the day of a race at Sandown last year.

Gelagotis appeared at the Victorian Racing Tribunal on Monday to answer three charges relating to an elevated bicarb reading taken from Strong Influence before the horse ran third in June 2019.

Gelagotis pleaded not guilty to administering an alkalising substance to Strong Influence to affect the result of a race and a charge of causing the horse to be administered with an alkalising substance.

However, Gelagotis pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of presenting Strong Influence to race at Sandown with an elevated bicarb level.

Trainer Peter Gelagotis celebrates after winning the Australian Derby with Levendi in 2018. Photo: AAP Image/David Moir.Source:AAP

An initial pre-race blood sample showed Strong Influence had a reading of 37.8 millimoles per litre in plasma. A second test produced a reading of 37.1 millimoles.

The rules of racing allow for a horse to race with a TCO2 level of 36 millimoles per litre in plasma.

The VRT heard evidence from current and former Gelagotis employees as well as Strong Influence’s owner Ron Thomas on the opening day of the hearing.

Gelagotis will give evidence on Tuesday morning.

The hearing is scheduled for three days but is unlikely to take up the full allotment of time.

Originally published asGelagotis pleads not guilty to serious charges

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